Physicians from the Triad's three largest health care systems are urging the public to help them in the fight against COVID-19. 

Cone Health, Novant Health, and Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist say they've seen a surge in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in recent weeks. Over 90 percent of those patients are unvaccinated.

Dr. John Mann from Novant Health says health care systems are being stretched thin.

“When you go out in the community it doesn't feel like we're having a health crisis, but when you walk in the doors of any of our hospitals it's readily apparent that we are having a crisis," he says. "Team members are tired, providers are tired. We really are just asking everyone to take an opportunity to get vaccinated. Help your loved ones, help the people that are trying to take care of the communities, and the first step is to get vaccinated.”

Physicians say their hospitals still have beds for those who need them, but the volume of people in emergency rooms means some might have longer wait times.

They recommend other locations for routine COVID-19 testing.

The doctors say they believe peak hospitalizations could be in the next few weeks, with a possible rise in cases following Labor Day weekend.

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